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The Department of Internal Affairs

The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


Our organisation

The Department has six branches:

In addition to the groups and functions listed below, each branch includes a Development and Support group, to provide direct support to the Deputy CE on strategic and business issues.

Strategy and Governance branch

The role of the Strategy and Governance branch is to provide strategic management and governance support to the Chief Executive and the Executive Leadership Team. Collectively it is accountable for:

  • facilitating effective governance of the Department
  • leading and facilitating development of the Department's strategic direction
  • working collaboratively with the branches and Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management to successfully achieve the Department's strategic priorities.

It has the following groups:

  • Strategy, Planning and Performance
  • Research and Evaluation
  • Risk, Assurance and Audit
  • Legal
  • Effectiveness for Māori

Knowledge, Information, Research & Technology branch

The role of the branch is to:

  • manage the storage, preservation, and conservation of knowledge, information, heritage collections and taonga
  • promote efficient and innovative access to those collections for the benefit of government and New Zealanders

The Knowledge, Information, Research & Technology branch includes the following groups and functions:

National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa

The National Library is established under its own Act of Parliament. The Director is the National Librarian.

The National Library:

  • develops and maintains the Crown’s documentary heritage collections, principally the Alexander Turnbull Library
  • makes the National Library’s collections accessible in order to provide for the most advantageous use of those collections and resources
  • supplements and furthers the work of other libraries in New Zealand
  • works collaboratively with other institutions having similar purposes, including those forming part of the international library community.
  • provides other services that include access to information resources and bibliographic and school services
  • promotes cooperation and work collaboratively with others on library matters within New Zealand and overseas

The National Library has the following four units:

  • Alexander Turnbull Library
  • Content Services
  • Literacy, Learning & Public Programmes
  • National Digital Library

Find out more about the National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa

Archives New Zealand, Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga

Archives New Zealand is the guardian of the record of government. Its holdings include the originals of the Treaty of Waitangi, government documents, maps, plans, paintings, film and sound recordings. The General Manager is the Chief Archivist.

Archives New Zealand:

  • manages the Public Records Act 2005 and works with government agencies to administer the Act  
  • makes sure records of government decision making are created and those of long-term value, including digital, are transferred into its care
  • provides recordkeeping advice and information to government agencies
  • makes public archives accessible to government departments, other organisations and the public
  • manages the public archives in a protected and secure environment
  • provides leadership and support for archival activities across New Zealand.

Archives New Zealand has the following four units:

  • Regional & Access Services
  • Archives Management
  • Government Recordkeeping
  • Māori & Community Archives

Find out more about Archives New Zealand, Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga

Government CIO Office

The role of the Government Chief Information Officer (GCIO), vested in the Chief Executive of the Department of Internal Affairs, is delegated to the Government CIO office, in order to:

  • develop and oversee implementation of the government’s ICT Strategy
  • provide high level strategic advice on ICT-related matters

Government Technology Services (GTS)

  • provides ICT infrastructure management and service delivery to the Department
  • provides operational support for the all-of-government ICT Strategy

GTS has the following eight units:

  • Service Assurance
  • Service Planning
  • Service Desk and Delivery
  • Service Management
  • Security
  • Infrastructure
  • Professional Services & Programme Delivery
  • Architecture

ICT Supply & Procurement

  • manages contracts and supplier relationships
  • sets sourcing strategy for GTS
  • carries out ICT procurement for the Department and all of government

Government Information Services (GIS)

  • provides information management for the Department
  • provides information standards and advisory for all of government
  • provides web information service delivery for all of government
  • Authentication Unit, NZ Gazette, the Translation Service
    • authentication of NZ-issued documents for use overseas
    • publication of the New Zealand Gazette
    • translation services

Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management

The Ministry provides national leadership in the civil defence and emergency management (CDEM) sector. Its primary purpose is to lead New Zealand in reducing risk, being ready for, responding to and recovering from disasters. The branch includes the following roles and functions:

  • establishing the national level capability and arrangements for responding to civil defence emergencies
  • providing national leadership of the CDEM sector, including the development of standards and guidance
  • supporting capability development of the local and regional level CDEM sector
  • leading a coordinated national public education campaign
  • monitoring and coordinating the use of resources in the CDEM sector
  • directing and controlling the response during a state of national emergency.

For more information see:

Policy, Regulatory and Ethnic Affairs branch

The role of the branch is to:

  • provide policy advice to the Department’s Ministers
  • perform regulatory and compliance operations
  • provide advice and services relating to Ethnic Affairs
  • carry out monitoring of, and advice on appointments for a number of Crown Entities

The Policy, Regulatory and Ethnic Affairs branch includes the following groups and functions:


  • Local government and community policy
  • Local government operations
  • Gambling, racing and censorship policy
  • Identity policy (including policy relating to citizenship, passports and the registration of births, deths, marriages and civil unions)
  • Civil defence emergency management policy
  • Policy relating to the provision and funding of New Zealand's fire services
  • General policy (including policy relating to daylight saving, public inquiries and commissions of inquiry)
  • Knowledge, Information, Research & Technology policy (including library, archives and public records policy)
  • Strategic analysis and information

Regulatory and Compliance Operations

  • Anti-spam operations
  • Censorship operations
  • Gambling operations
  • Intelligence operations
  • Anti-money laundering and countering financing of terrorism operations
  • Complaints, investigations and prosecutions
  • Operational policy

Office for the Community and Voluntary Sector

Office of Ethnic Affairs

Crown Entity Monitoring and Appointments

Service Delivery and Operations branch

The role of the branch is to provide public-facing services and operations for community development grants and advice, passport and citizenship applications, birth, death, marriage, civil union and name change registrations, and identity verification and authentication services.

The Service Delivery and Operations branch includes the following groups of functions:

Community Operations

  • Regional Service Delivery
    Includes community development advisors in four regional teams:
  • Northern Region
  • Central Region
  • Lower North Island Region
  • Southern Region (South Island)
  • Funding Operations & Policy

Includes support for:


  • provides functions relating to passports operations. See Passports website.


Births, Deaths and Marriages

  • registers and maintains New Zealand birth, death, marriage, civil union and name change information and provides access to that information by issuing certificates and printouts. The BDM office also appoints marriage and civil union celebrants, and issues certificates of no impediment for people who wish to marry or enter into a civil union overseas. See Births, deaths and marriages.

Customer Services

Shared Services branch

The Shared Services branch provides corporate support functions to other business groups in the Department, in communications, finance, human resources, property, procurement and administration. It is also the home to Ministerial Services and Secretariat Support.

Ministerial Services and Secretariat Support

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Related Information

Read our Disclosure of chief executive expenses, gifts and hospitality

Read the Department's Performance Improvement Framework Assessment